July 21st has been both a day of Science and the Arts and a day of War and Warriors.
In Part 1 we highlight red letter days in the U.S. Space Program (landing on the moon and the last space shuttle landing).
In Part 2, we address the warriors which includes the first major battle of the Civil War, a U-boat attack on Cape Cod, the execution of Hitler’s attempted assassins, the Geneva Accords partitioning Vietnam and Bloody Friday in Northern Ireland.
In Part 3 below, we highlight Science and the Arts with the Scopes Monkey Trial, Legionnaires Disease Outbreak, the Coldest Day on Earth and the birth of Ernest Hemingway.
Verdict in Scopes Monkey Trial
The State of Tennessee v. John Thomas Scopes was decided on this day, with John Scopes being found guilty and fined $100 for teaching evolution in a publicly funded school. Scopes, who was never even sure if he taught evolution but had stepped forward to test the law, had his conviction reversed on a procedural grounds.
It would not be until 1968 that the Supreme Court would hold that prohibiting the teaching of evolution in public schools violated the establishment clause of the First Amendment in Epperson v. Arkansas 393 U.S. 97 (1968).
With three-time presidential candidate William Jennings Bryan, arguing for the prosecution, and famed defense attorney Clarence Darrow representing Scopes, the trial drew was a media event. The trial has been dramatized on stage and in film in Jerome Lawrence and Robert Edwin Lee’s Inherit the Wind.
Legionnaires Disease Outbreak
Legionnaires’ disease acquired its name in July 1976, when an outbreak of pneumonia occurred among people attending a convention of the American Legion at the Bellevue-Stratford Hotel in Philadelphia. Of the 182 reported cases, mostly men, 29 died. On January 18, 1977, the causative agent was identified as a previously unknown strain of bacteria, subsequently named Legionella, and the species that caused the outbreak was named Legionella pneumophila.
The Coldest Day on Earth
The world’s lowest temperature in an inhabited location was recorded at Vostok Station, Antarctica at −89.2 °C (−128.6 °F).
Ernest Hemingway, the Pulitzer Prize and Nobel Prize winning author was born in Oak Park, Illinois.